BATTLE OF THE SEAS: The Cunarders

"At $100 a night you can sleep in an A-deck suite whose decorations may include peach glass and python-skin fabrics. . . . You open the bathroom door by a plastic composition knob that is warm to the touch. . . . In one ballroom indirect colored lights change automatically with varying tunes of the dance orchestra. . . ."

In June 1936 these items struck FORTUNE'S staff as noteworthy about the new $35 million, 81,235-ton Cunarder Queen Mary. Through the prewar years, the Queen Mary carried Britain's flag in the race of the...

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